IN THE NEWS

IFS Benefits Seminar Series

"Hot Topics in Delaware Employment Law"     

June 20th at the Christiana Hilton, Newark, DE      

Register Online: Click Here to Register Online


Employment law is an ever-changing and increasingly complicated issue for employers.  IFS Benefits is happy to help clear the air and provide an update with an informative, fast-paced and interactive seminar.

Experts from the law firm of Gordon, Fournaris & Mammarella, P.A. will discuss the most recent developments on a variety of topics:

          -  Covenants Not to Compete and the Delaware Trade Secrets Act

          -  At-Will Employment

          -  Employees v. Independent Contractors

 

Seminar Details:

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

 

8:00 a.m.  Registration & Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.  Seminar
 
Christiana Hilton
100 Continental Drive, Newark, DE 19713
Brandywine Ballroom

*Eligible for HRCI Credits

 

REGISTRATION:

Register Online

Register by Email - lboyle@ifs-benefits.com

Register by Phone - 302.652.2355 x169

Please RSVP by Friday, June 16, 2017


Aetna to Leave DE Exchange Market

May 11, 2017

Aenta will not participate in the Delaware individual public health insurance exchange for 2018 as a result of financial risk and an uncertain outlook for the Individual marketplace.  This does not apply to other Aetna products, such as employer group plans and standalone dental, vision and pharmacy.  The NewsJournal further covered this story.

http://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/health/2017/05/10/aetna-marketplace/316872001/

 

Upcoming Client Seminar

IFS Benefits is currently preparing to host a spring client seminar.  Topics included in the presentation will be compliance changes, ACA changes and forecast, as well as subject matter experts for several different aspects of employee benefits.  Please contact your IFS Benefits consultant or account manager today for more information.

2017 Health Insurance Rates Released

October 6th, 2016

DOVER, DE - Insurance Commissioner Karen Weldin Stewart today released Delaware's Qualified Health Plan average rates for Plan Year 2017.

The Commissioner recommended approval of a 32.5% average rate increase in the individual market for Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Delaware.  The approved average rate increase for the small group market for HIghmark's plans is 2.74%.

Aetna Life Insurance company received an average of 22.8% increase in the individual market and Aetna Health Insurance Company received an average increase of 23.6%.  In the small group market, Aetna Life received an average increase of 15.2% and Aetna Health received an average increase of 19.7%.

The approved rates are average rates; some consumers may pay more, some less. 

IFS Announces upgraded Client Portal

June 27, 2016

IFS Benefits is happy to announce an upgrade to clients using our HRConnection portal.  Amino - a consumer health care search platform that is now a part of your portal - allows employees to find and book appointments with doctors whose specific experience matches their needs.  This feature is available at no additional cost.  Amino analyzes data on nearly every doctor in America.  Time magazine notes "There's a New Way to Find the Perfect Doctor For You".  Amino's data comes from de-identified health insurance claims spanning the experience of 188 million Americans over the past five years.

IFS Benefits, LLC named #1 Highmark Broker for 4th Consecutive Year

June 14th, 2016

IFS Benefits, LLC - a Newark based, locally owned and operated employee benefits brokerage agency that specializes in providing cost-effective employee benefits solutions to employers of all sizes - demonstrated their continued success by being named the #1 health insurance broker (measured by in-force premium) for the 4th consecutive year by Highmark BlueCross BlueShield of Delaware.  Executive Vice President, Steve Blewitt, GBA, accepted the award on behalf of IFS Benefits and noted, "We'd like to thank all of our clients for the trust and confidence they have placed in us as we continue to guide them through the ever changing health insurance industry and the continued impact of the ACA (Affordable Care Act)."

 

Recognition like this will provide current and prospective IFS Benefits clients a continued comfort level that IFS Benefits is clearly a leader in the health insurance brokerage arena.  "Our professional staff of employee benefits experts are the best in the area," said Bob Sonchen, President of IFS Benefits, LLC.  "They continue to advise businesses on the broad array of employee benefit insurance products and trends."

IFS Benefits, LLC is not a subsidiary, nor is it controlled by Highmark BlueCross BlueShield.

Average Family Healthcare Costs over $25,000

June 3, 2016

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports the annual Milliman Medical Index revealed that "the average total cost of health care for the typical family of four will" be $25,826 this year. The projection "includes the average cost of health insurance paid by employers and employees, as well as deductibles and out-of-pocket expensees for the most common type of health plan." Moreover, the Milliman Medical Index "estimates that employers will spend an average of $14,793 this year to provide health benefits for a family of four."

DOL Issues New Overtime Payment Rules

May 23, 2016

On May 18th, 2016, the US Department of Labor (DOL) announced a final rule regarding overtime wage payment qualifications for the "white collar exemptions" under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  The final rule increases the salary an employee must be paid in order to qualify for a white collar exemption.  The required salary level is increased to $47,476 per year and will be automatically updated every three years.  The final rule does not modify the duties test employees must meet to qulify for a white collar exemption.  Employers will need to comply with this rule by Dec. 1, 2016.  Contact your IFS Benefits representative for additional guidance on this topic.

Ryan Dunn Earns CSFS Designation

4/19/2016

Newark, DE - 4/19/16 - Ryan C. Dunn, Account Executive, IFS Benefits, LLC has earned the Certified Self-Funding Specialist professional designation from the Health Care Administrators Association, Minneapolis, MN.

 

In creating the Certified Self-Funded Specialist program, the Health Care Administrators Association (HCAA) emphasizes its key mission tenets, which are promoting education, information, resources and the exchange of ideas.  CSFS provides all of the parties to a self-funded health care plan the information needed to make informed decisions.

 

Candidates for the CSFS designation must complete an extensive curriculum of seven comprehensive courses which cover every aspect that plan sponsors, brokers, employee benefit professionals, and other health care professionals need to consider when establishing or maintaining a self-funded health care plan.

 

The Certified Self-Funding Specialist certification program was formally launched at the 6th Annula HCAA TPA University in Anaheim, California on July 15th, 2009.

DE makes ruling on Small Group Definition

October 20, 2015

The Delaware department of insurance announced earlier this week that the definition of a "small employer", as it appears in Chapter 72 of the Delaware Insurance Code will remain applicable to employers with a group health plan providing coverage to not more than 50 eligible employees.

This is a result of the PACE (Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees) Act, signed into federal law on October 8th, 2015 by President Obama.  This legislation allowed states to decide for themselves if they wanted to change the definition of a small employer to apply to groups of up to 100 eligible employees, as was originally provisioned in the Affordable Care Act.

DE Marketplace 2016 Pricing released

October 1, 2015

Insurance Commissioner Karen Weldin Steward released Delaware's Qualified Health Plan rates for Plan Year 2016 earlier this week.  The Commissioner's approved rates were submitted to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid services (CMS) in August.  CMS has final authority on the rates.  CMS concurred with the Commissioner's recommendations and announced their approval on September 21, 2015.

 

For additional details, please visit: http://www.delawareinsurance.gov/departments/rates/ratefilings.shtml

 

Delaware News Journal story:  http://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/local/2015/09/29/obamacare-premiums-going-delaware/73055388/

Cadillac Tax Under Fire

9/17/2015

A new bipartisan effort to cancel Obamacare's Cadillac tax - the 40 percent levy on high-cost health insurance plans - adds a wrinkle to an impending fight in Congress.

 

The repeal bill unveiled Thursday in the US Senate by Nevada Republican Dean Heller and New Mexico Democrat Martin Heinrich stands little chance of becoming law soon, especially with Barack Obama in the White House.

http://www.benefitspro.com/2015/09/17/senate-pair-submit-bill-to-repeal-ppaca-cadillac-t?eNL=55fb14e5160ba0872b885485&utm_source=BPro_NewsAlert&utm_medium=EMC-Email_editorial&utm_campaign=09172015&_LID=93533909

Double Digit increases proposed for Obamacare individual plans

June 2nd, 2015

Initial proposals surfaced this week from several insurance carriers around the country showing double digit rate increases for the 2016 plan year.  These plans, primarily purchased on the individual marketplace, or "exchange" are an integral part of the affordable care act.  Further details are available from several news sources below. 

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/02/business/seeking-rate-increases-insurers-use-guesswork.html?ref=health&_r=0

http://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/local/2015/06/01/double-digit-rate-hikes-sought-obamacare-plans/28312071/

http://www.politico.com/story/2015/06/insurers-seek-double-digit-obamacare-hikes-118524.html?hp=rc1_4

IFS Benefits, LLC recognized as the top insurance agency for Highmark BlueCross BlueShield of Delaware

May 19, 2015

IFS Benefits, LLC - a Newark based, locally owned and operated employee benefits brokerage agency - demonstrated their continued success by being named the #1 health insurance broker (measured by in-force premium) for the third consecutive year by Highmark BlueCross BlueShield of Delaware.

President Bob Sonchen, RHU, GBDS, accepted the award on behalf of IFS Benefits and noted, "We'd like to thank all of our clients for the trust and confidence they have placed in us to help guide them through some very unsettled times specifically as they relate to the ACA (Affordable Care Act).

Recognition like this will provide current and prospective IFS Benefits clients a continued comfort level that IFS Benefits is clearly a leader in the health insurance brokerage arena.  "Our professional staff of employee benefits experts are the best in the area." said Steve Blewitt, GBA, Executive Vice-President of IFS Benefits, LLC.  "They strive to proactively serve our clients and advise them on the broad array of employee benefit insurance products and trends."

President Bob Sonchen, RHU, GBDS, and Executive Vice President Steve Blewitt, GBA, are the founding partners of IFS Benefits, LLC.  They, along with the rest of their team make up IFS Benefits - a firm that specializes in providing cost-effective employee benefits solutions to employers of all sizes.  Bob and Steve reside in Hockessin and North Wilmington respectively, and are active in their communities.

IFS Benefits, LLC is not a subsidiary, nor is it controlled by Highmark BlueCross BlueShield.

IFS Benefits, LLC is headquartered in Newark, DE and has a second office in Lewes, DE.

IFS Expands Service Staff

May 15th, 2015

IFS Benefits, LLC is very excited to announce two new hires. Theresa Vreken has joined the firm as a Senior Client Manager and Alexis Wall has been hired in the role of Benefit Specialist. 

A Wilmington University graduate, Theresa has spent nearly 25 years in the health insurance industry.  After serving in various roles within the Sales & Marketing departments at Coventry Health Care, she spent the last 15 years in Account Management, where she lead the Coventry Account Management team in Delaware and Maryland.  She is licensed in Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania.

 

Theresa is a Certified Health Care Reform Specialist, and a member of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors.  She is a recent founder of Fund for Women (FFW) and serves on the FFW Grants Committee.

 

Alexis served in various roles within Aetna and comes to IFS Benefits with 8 years of health insurance experience.  She resides in New Castle, DE with her family. 

 

We are very excited to bring both Terry and Alexis onboard to further enhance our clients positive experience working with our agency.  In a time when most brokerage agencies are shrinking or staying status quo, IFS Benefits continues to grow and expand.  Both Terry and Alexis come to us with prior carrier experience which has proven beneficial since the inception of our agency in 2001.  Most of the staff at IFS Beneifts, LLC, a leading Employee Benefits Broker, have worked for a health insurance carrier prior to joining our staff.  This hiring practice has led to many successes for both our clients and our agency.

 

Bob Sonchen, President 

 

IFS Benefits, LLC

Anthem Data Breach

3/3/2015

A multi state Blue Cross Blue Shield plan known as Anthem recently (1/29/15) discovered a data breach that could potentially affect up to 80 million individuals.  Those affected could include current and former Highmark members that received medical services within the last 10 years in the Anthem 14 state service area.

Highmark of Delaware and Anthem will be notifying affected members via mail in the coming weeks.  Anthem is also offering free credit monitoring and identity theft security services to those members affected.

While Highmark of Delaware is not directly affiliated with Anthem, some data was compromised because of BlueCard information in the Anthem data warehouse that was targeted and breached.  BlueCard is a national program that enables members of one Blue Cross plan to obtain health care services while traveling or living in another Blue Cross plan's service area.

 

 

IFS Benefits Featured on Radio Talk Show

January 6, 2015

Steve Blewitt, GBA, Executive Vice President at IFS Benefits, LLC was a featured guest on WCHE 1520 AM radio.  During a half hour live talk show radio host Dr. Lauren Schofield asked Steve to discuss the impact of health care reform on individuals and small businesses.  He provided listeners with detailed explanations about health care reform and offered suggestions on how small businesses can try to control health insurance costs in the era of the Affordable Care Act.

ACA Small Business Portal Opens in Five States

October 28, 2014

The Wall Street Journal reports that following a year-long delay, the Administration has opened the ACA's online insurance marketplace for small employers in a limited capacity in Delaware, Illinois, Missour, New Jersey and Ohio.  Rhett Buttle, director of private sector engagement at HHS, said in a blog post that the pilot site, known as the Small Business Health Options Program Marketplace Early Access, "will give the SHOP Market place important information about the user experience to begin the continuous quality improvement process before the site goes live in mid-November."

IFS Benefits, LLC recognized by Highmark of DE and Aetna as a top insurance agency

June 17th, 2014

IFS Benefits, LLC – a locally owned and operated employee benefits brokerage agency – demonstrated their strength and abilities with two recent awards. First, IFS Benefits was recognized as the largest insurance broker (measured by in-force premium) for Highmark BlueCross BlueShield of Delaware. Secondly, IFS Benefits achieved Premier Producer Chairman Level status with Aetna Health Plans.

“These achievements are a direct result of the trust and confidence our clients have placed in us” says Steve Blewitt, GBA – Executive Vice-President of IFS Benefits. “Recognition like this will surely pay dividends for our clients knowing that we have established such a high level of credibility with both insurers.” Recognition like this will provide current and prospective IFS Benefits clients a continued comfort level that IFS Benefits is clearly a leader in the health insurance brokerage arena.

“Our employee's broad product knowledge along with a desire to serve our clients proactively are a big reason for our success” says Blewitt.

President Bob Sonchen, RHU, GBDS and Executive Vice President Steve Blewitt, GBA are the founding partners of IFS Benefits, LLC, located in Newark, DE. They, along with eleven other professional staff members make up IFS Benefits - a firm that specializes in providing cost-effective employee benefits solutions to employers of all sizes. Bob and Steve reside in Hockessin and North Wilmington respectively, and are active in their communities.

IFS Benefits, LLC is not a subsidiary, nor is it controlled by Aetna or Highmark BlueCross BlueShield. IFSBenefits has two offices in Newark, DE and Lewes, DE.

HIPAA Training

June 10th, 2014

IFS Benefits employees Kristen Clark, Stephanie Records, Diane Rose and Bob Shenkle recently completed HIPAA Awareness Training to satisfy the requirements under the HIPAA Privacy laws.  They all received certificates of successful completion.

 

HIPAA stands for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.  It is a federal law enacted in 1996 as an attempt at incremental healthcare reform.  It was subsequently revised in 2009 with the ARRA/HITECH Act and again in 2013 with the Omnibus Rule.  HIPAA's intenst is to reform the healthcare industry by reducing costs, simplifying administrative processes and burdens, and improving the privacy and security of patients' information.

IFS Benefits, LLC Hires New Client Manager

May 19, 2014

IFS Benefits, LLC announced today that Stephanie Records has joined the firm to further assist in developing their rapidly growing portfolio of regional accounts.  Stephanie lives in Newark, DE and attended the University of Delaware before transferring to Wilmington University to complete her B.S. in Behavioral Science.  She comes with a wealth of experience within the industry, with 6 years of experience in employee benfits.  Previously, she was an Account Manager at Lyons Insurance.  She is a licensed life and health producer.  Stephanie holds an active board position on the National Association of Insurance and FInancial Advisors (NAIFA), DE Chapter.  She is also an active volunteer in the community and holds the role of state planning chair for the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation in DE (CCFA).

IFS Benefits, LLC Hires New Account Executive

April 7, 2014

IFS Benefits, LLC announced today that Robert Shenkle, ChFC, CLU has joined the firm to further assist in developing their rapidly growing portfolio of regional accounts.  Robert, of Wilmington, DE and a graduate of the University of Delaware, comes with a wealth of experience within the industry.  H has over 20 years of experience in employee benefits.  Previously he was a Senior Associate at Mercer, March  & McLennan.  He is a licensed life, health, and variable annuity producer.

Health Care Sticker shock hits Delaware

03/24/14

The effect of the Affordable Care Act is starting to be felt by all Delawareans. An article in the Delaware News Journal from Saturday, March 22 2014 describes how this piece of legislation is hitting home for residents of the First State in the form of premium and deductible changes.

 

http://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/local/2014/03/22/delawareans-experience-health-care-sticker-shock/6745501/

Private Health Plan Premiums Spiking

February 6th, 2014

Even the Federal Reserve Board is now monitoring the recent spike in private health insurance premiums for 2014 plan years.  Delaware is among the states seeing the greatest annualized spike in small group rates.  Take a look at the "Forbes" article for details.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/scottgottlieb/2014/01/10/new-survey-private-health-insurance-rates-set-to-rise-significantly-in-2014/

IFS Benefits Is Exchange Ready!

September 25, 2013

IFS Benefits, LLC, one of Delaware's premier employee benefits insurance and consulting agencies, announced that all Account Executives, Account Managers and Benefit Support Specialists have completed the various certification courses and exams for health care reform's Federally Facilitated Marketplace Exchanges.  This included training and exams for The Affordable Care Act, Marketplace Basics, SHOP Marketplace, and the Individual Marketplace.

"We feel the successful completions of this required curriculum has our employes well prepared to help our clients navigate the marketplace Exchanges that are set to open on October 1st, 2013," says Steve Blewitt, GBA and Executive Vice-President of IFS Benefits.

Health Insurance Marketplaces (also known as Exchanges) are new organizations that create alternative markets for buying health insurance.  They will offer a choice of different health plans, certify plans that participate and provide information to help consumers understand their coverage options.

Beginning in 2014, Marketplaces will primarily serve small businesses and individuals buying insurance.  Contact IFS Benefits, LLC to learn more.

Three IFS Benefits Employees Earn GBDS Designation

August 7, 2013

IFS Benefits, LLC, one of Delaware's premier benefits consultant agencies, announced that Kim Sadowski, Robert Sonchen and Ryan Dunn have been awarded the National Underwriter Company's Group Benefits Disability Specialist (GBDS) designation.

 

The GBDS designation signifies that the recipient has passed stringent qualifications and is certified to communicate to industry regulators, industry leaders, employers and the public about the importance of group disability income protection and the consequences of inadequte disability coverage.

 

Attaining the designation requires recipients to demonstrate specific skill sets and mandates ongoing developmental training and educational programs.  The designation also establishes a high level of moral and ethical conduct within the group disability benefits industry by detailing market conduct responsibilities.

 

 

PCORI Fees Reminder

07/24/2013



A Reminder About PCORI Fees

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) includes a fee that health insurers and self-funded plan sponsors must pay on an annual basis. Commonly referred to as PCORI or Comparative Effectiveness Research fees, this fee will be used to fund research of the government’s new Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute.

IFS Benefits, LLC is issuing this reminder since certain plan sponsors will have to remit this fee by July 31, 2013. The types of plans that must pay PCORI fees include:

·       Health/accident plans.

·       Health FSAs that are not HIPAA-excepted.

·       HRAs that are not integrated with another applicable self-funded medical plan with the same plan year.

Please note that retiree plans must also comply—this is one of the few provisions of PPACA that impacts retiree plans.

PCORI fees go into effect for plan years ending on or after October 1, 2012 and before October 1, 2019. For the initial year (plan years ending October 1, 2012 – September 30, 2013), the fee is $1 multiplied by the average number of lives, and will be adjusted annually in subsequent years. The fee will be reported and remitted annually by July 31 on IRS Form 720 –  Quarterly Federal Excise Tax Return.

To determine the average number of lives, the IRS guidance provides three calculation methods:

·      Actual count method. You would sum the lives covered for each day of the plan year and divide it by the number of days in the plan year.

·     Snapshot method. You would sum the lives covered for one day each quarter of the plan year (or an equal number of dates each quarter) and divide it by the number of dates on which a count was made. This can be a sum of actual lives, or you can add the number of participants with self-only coverage to the number of participants with coverage other than self-only multiplied by 2.35.

·      Form 5500 method: For employee-only plans, you would sum the total participants reported at the beginning and end of the plan year and divide it by 2. For plans that allow dependent coverage, you would simply sum the total participants  reported at the beginning and end of the plan year.

Regulatory guidance has issued a special rule for HRAs in which the PCORI count may be based on number of employees rather than number of lives. For this reason, plan sponsors may be able to use HNAS-issued bills as reporting toward a  snapshot counting approach.

Please note the following:

An HRA that is integrated with a self-funded medical plan that has the same plan year is not required to report the HRA separately. The plan sponsor would report the medical plan only for PCORI purposes in accordance with the guidance. 

However, an HRA that is integrated with a fully insured medical plan must report and remit PCORI fees for the HRA. In this type of arrangement, the insurer reports the medical plan while the plan sponsor handles the HRA. Likewise, for standalone HRAs (non-integrated), the plan sponsor must also report and remit PCORI fees.



 

Your remedy for health care reform doubts

Looking for continuing implementation of health care reform legislation? IFS Benefits, LLC is here to help! As a service to our valued clients, we are offering 90-minute, attorney-led webinars to help you navigate this complex issue. Contact us now to take advantage of this unique opportunity—space is limited.

Health Care Reform - What’s Next: covers the future of the health care reform law, focusing on the provisions that are applicable to employers and health plans, as well as upcoming deadlines employers are facing.

Health Care Reform Update: covers recent developments related to health care reform. 

Health Care Reform: 2014 Changes: focuses on the health care reform requirements that will take effect in 2014, including plan design changes, individual and employer penalties, and notice and disclosure requirements.

When: Wednesday, May 22nd at 8:30 a.m.  Complimentary breakfast will be served starting at 8:30, followed by the seminar at 9:00 a.m.

Where: Virden Center Pilot Room, 700 Pilottown Rd., Lewes, DE 19958

Cost: Free

Please RSVP to Ashley Buczik, abuczik@ifs-benefits.com or at 302-652-2355 ext. 111

Potential Rate Shock

May 2, 2013

The AP reports that "small business owners may be experiencing sticker shock now that insurers are revealing the rates they want to charge under the new health care law."  These businesses, "especially those that are required, for the first time, to start providing coverage under the Affordable Care Act have been waiting for some clue about how much it will cost."  And now, as insurers in states like Rhode Island and Maryland are proposing double-digit premium increases, "many are worried that paying for health care will hurt profits and have held back on hiring, spending or expanding."  You can read the full article from The Washington Post here.

Press Release – New Office Location

March 14, 2013

IFS Benefits LLC, Inc. is pleased to announce the relocation of their main office to Suite 209, 220 Continental Drive, Newark, Delaware 19713.

The move will better accommodate employees and enable the company to continue to maintain superior customer service to the New Castle County and Northern Kent County area. Most importantly, the relocation is driven by the IFS Benefits LLC’s commitment to better serve its clients. IFS Benefits LLC feels confident that clients will find a greater convenience with the new more centralized location. IFS Benefits LLC also operates an office in Lewes to accommodate clients in Southern Kent County and Sussex County.

IFS Benefits LLC, a Delaware health insurance and benefits broker, specializes in employee benefits solutions to small, medium and large sized businesses as well as individuals. Serving Delaware and surrounding states since 2001, IFS Benefits LLC has strong relationships with all major insurance providers. 

Aetna

February 19, 2013

Aetna (NYSE: AET) today named Bon Sonchen, RHU and Steve Blewitt, GBA as a Small Group Premier Producer for 2013. The prestigious Premier Producer designation is earned each year by only two percent of brokers selling Aetna Small Group products. “Reaching Premier Producer status is an important milestone,” said David Notari, Vice President of Distribution and Channel Management for Aetna Small Group and Individual Products. “This elite group of producers has demonstrated the sales success that can only come from broad product knowledge and a dedication to client satisfaction.” President Bob Sonchen, RHU and Vice President Steve Blewitt, GBA are partners of IFS Benefits, LLC. With a combined 38 years of industry experience and a skilled staff of professionals, they specialize in providing cost-effective solutions to small and mid-size employers. Bob’s thorough understanding of the managed care market, positions him to effectively provide his clients with the right employee benefits plan. Steve has focused on helping businesses understand the shifting change in the employee benefits industry and adapt benefit strategies to best suit their company’s needs. IFS Benefits, LLC is not a subsidiary of nor controlled by Aetna. 

About Aetna 
Aetna is one of the nation's leading diversified health care benefits companies, serving approximately 37.3 million people with information and resources to help them make better informed decisions about their health care. Aetna offers a broad range of traditional, voluntary and consumer-directed health insurance products and related services, including medical, pharmacy, dental, behavioral health, group life and disability plans, and medical management capabilities, Medicaid health care management services and health information technology services. Our customers include employer groups, individuals, college students, part-time and hourly workers, health plans, health care providers, governmental units, government-sponsored plans, labor groups and expatriates. For more information, see www.aetna.com

About IFS Benefits, LLC 
IFS Benefits, LLC is a Delaware based health insurance and benefits broker, with offices in Newark and Lewes. They offer employee benefits insurance solutions to small and medium sized businesses. Serving Delaware and surrounding states since 2001, their staff has been successful in helping businesses control their health insurance and related employee benefits costs. IFS Benefits also provides high-quality innovative resources and tools to help employers improve their firm's employee benefits. 

PATRICK FITZGERALD EARNS REGISTERED HEALTH UNDERWRITER (RHU) DESIGNATION

November 5, 2012

Patrick Fitzgerald, Senior Account Executive at IFS Benefits, LLC has earned the Registered Health Underwriter (RHU) professional designation from The American College, Bryn Mawr, PA. 

Candidates for the RHU designation must complete three courses and six hours of supervised examinations. They must also fulfill stringent experience and ethics requirements. Over 8,900 individuals have been awarded the RHU designation- including those granted by the College since assuming ownership of the program in 1995. 

The RHU program was established in 1979 to raise professional standards and improve the methods of selling and servicing disability income and health insurance. The subject matter covered by the program includes group and individual health insurance, managed care and other health insurance topics. 

Patrick is a Senior Account Executive at IFS Benefits where he focuses on new business acquisition and account retention.  Prior to joining IFS in 2008, he spent four years with Coventry Health Care, where he worked in new business sales.  Since joining the IFS team in 2008, Patrick has been an integral part of our rapid growth.  He is an active member in the New Castle County, State and Lewes Chamber of Commerce. 

Patrick is a 2003 graduate of The College of William and Mary where he majored in Economics.  While at William and Mary, Patrick was the captain of their division one, varsity Gymnastics team.  Patrick enjoys almost anything outdoors and spending time with his family. 

The American College is dedicated to leadership in innovative training and development that helps financial services companies and their employees succeed. As a non-profit educational institution holding the highest level of academic accreditation, The College has served as a valued business partner to banks, brokerage firms, insurance companies, and others for over 82 years. The American College’s faculty represents some of the financial services industry’s foremost thought leaders. For more information, visit TheAmericanCollege.edu.

Ashley Buczik

September 17, 2012

ASHLEY BUCZIK of IFS Benefits Earns Chartered Healthcare Consultant (ChHC) Designation

Ashley Buczik, RHU, ChHC, of IFS Benefits, LLC a Wilmington and Lewes, DE based employee benefits brokerage, has earned the Chartered Healthcare Consultant (ChHC) professional designation form The American College, Bryn Mawr, PA.

Candidates for the ChHC designation must complete a minimum of six courses and 12 hours of proctored examinations.  They must also fulfill stringent experience and ethics requirements.

The ChHC program is considered the most comprehensive credential available for benefits specialists, healthcare consultants, and financial advisors interested in effectively providing clients with cutting-edge information.  The curriculum provides professionals with an in-depth understanding of the latest reforms in the healthcare mandated by recent legislation.

Once the program is completed, a Chartered Healthcare Consultant can provide expert advice on a broad range of health insurance related topics including state exchanges; medical loss ratios; Early Retiree Reinsurance Programs (EERPs); Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs); Health Savings Accounts (HSAs); Cafeteria Plans; and more.

Ashley is an Assistant Vice President at IFS Benefits.  She brings over 20 years of experience to IFS Benefits with a background in health care management, sales and service.  Prior to joining IFS in 2004, she spent nearly 10 years in client servicing and sales at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Delaware and Coventry Health Care, two leading managed care organizations.

Ashley is a 1990 graduate from Gettysburg College, with a degree in Business Administration and Human Resource Management.  Ashley has also received further training, and received her Register Health Underwriter (RHU) designation through the American College as well as a recent Certificate in Health Reform Studies.  She is licensed in Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Massachusetts.  She resides with her family in Hockessin Delaware and stays actively involved in the local community.

The American College is the nation’s largest non-profit educational institution devoted to financial services.  Holding the highest level of academic accreditation, The College has served as a valued business partner to banks, brokerage firms, insurance companies, and others for over 84 years.  The American College’s faculty represents some of the financial service industry’s foremost thought leaders.  For more information, visit TheAmericanCollege.edu.

New Castle County Office
220 Continental Drive • Suite 209 • Newark, DE 19713
302-652-2355 / fax: 302-652-5722
Sussex County Office
17527 Nassau Commons Blvd • Suite 208 • Lewes, DE 19958
302-645-2356 / fax: 302-645-5723